An appearance of impropriety

Last Sunday morning, the NFL pulled a replacement ref scheduled to work that afternoon’s New Orleans – Carolina game.

It seems our budding official presented a little conflict of interest.

According to, side-judge Brian Stropolo is a big Saints fan.  Stropolo hails from New Orleans, and he apparently had photos of himself wearing Saints gear posted on his Facebook page.  When Stropolo announced that he was scheduled to work the Saints game, a friend posted, “Hey, be nice with those yellow flags for our Saints!”

Stropolo took his Facebook page down.

A league executive said that, “an appearance of impropriety” warranted Sunday’s action.

Apparently, the NFL didn’t trust that the striped shirt would adequately cover up the Saints jersey underneath. Can’t say that I blame them.

This raises an interesting question. Why do we trust that a black robe will cover up the U.S.A. jersey federal judges wear?


Arab Spring is now a Western Winter?

by Judge Andrew Napolitano

Is the Arab Middle East ready for democracy? We know how the past two American presidents have answered this.

The revised stated purpose behind President George W. Bush’s invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq was to build a new world order by forcing democracy on populations to whom it was truly alien. The original stated purpose for invading Afghanistan was to destroy the folks who provided shelter to the 9/11 attackers, and the original stated purpose for invading Iraq was to rid it of a government that possessed and might use weapons of mass destruction.

But when we learned that the real support for the 9/11 attacks came from folks protected by our so-called friends in Saudi Arabia, and when we learned that the only weapons of mass destruction possessed by Iraq were the ones the U.S. sold to Saddam Hussein in the mid-1980s, which he no longer possessed, the Bush administration changed the rhetoric but not the violence or its cost.

Since the termination of those wars came about after the installation of puppet regimes in both countries, and since those regimes now claim legitimacy because they were elected by the people permitted to vote there, we have been reminded that democracy is more than the result of a majority vote. It is respect for the rule of law and recognition of the inalienable rights of the individual. It is not torture, extra-judicial killings, or government-sanctioned rape and legal suppression of women and girls; it is not racial and religious and ethnic hatred and persecution; and it is not the rule of mobs in the streets.


Subsidies for Electronic Medical Records Leads to Higher Medicare Bills

Government subsidies often produce unintended consequences. The latest example comes from the New York Times, which reports that federal subsidizes to encourage doctors and hospitals to use electronic billing and recording records are leading to larger Medicare bills. That means that taxpayers are taking a double hit even though policymakers claimed that electronic record-keeping would make health care delivery more efficient, and thus less costly.

From the article: